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Overview: A shaded hike to the top of the ridge at Skyline blvd (Hwy 35).
Distance: 5.6 Mile
Elevation change: 1000ft
Hiking time: 4-5 hours
Season: All year
Getting there: From Interstate 280, exit Woodside Road (CA 84). Drive west about 1.5 miles, and turn right onto Kings Mountain Road. Drive about 2 miles to the park entrance on the right side of the road.
Parking lot address: Click here for directions
Sometimes I look at my kids and wonder, “What happened?” Just yesterday they were reluctant, dawdling hikers and today they’re strapping young men who can’t get enough vertical.
We are lucky to live in a place where we can find vertical climbs that worked when they were small and still hit the mark today for the whole family. We recently did a great hike that I wanted to share with you from Huddart Park up to Skyline Blvd.
It was Labor Day weekend, and the Kings Mountain Art Fair was in full swing. It’s an annual event that benefits the Kings Mountain Volunteer Fire Brigade, and it’s been going on for decades. Road traffic up and down the mountain is typically a nightmare. One sure way to skip all of that is to just hike up.
We started at Huddart Park at around 11:00 am on Labor Day and there was plenty of parking at that time. Leaving out of the Toyon Group campsite, we headed up the service road to Crystal Springs Trail. We turned left on Summit Springs Trail after 1.6 miles, and after another half a mile, we went right on the Skyline Trail to the Fair. We hardly saw a soul.
The Fair itself was packed as always with lots of art, activities, families and the usual great people watching. We happened to pack a picnic, which we laid out on one of the tables and enjoyed under the redwoods. They have some great craft beers and other wines for sale at the Fair, which was a welcome addition to our feast. Afterwards, we re-traced our steps and hoofed it down the mountain back to an absolutely packed Huddart Park at about 3:00.
Surprisingly, we had never done this hike up to the Fair, and we all loved it. Typically the weather is great, the hike is a decent pitch with about a 5 mile round trip – perfect for a relaxed family day together with some exercise thrown in. The trail is in great shape, and you are in the redwood and Douglas fir forest for most of the trip.
Even if you aren’t interested in going to the Fair, this is a great hike for the whole family.
In 1994, POST protected the 1,252-acre Phelger Estate adjacent to Huddart Park. The land opened to the public the following year and is now managed by the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. Access to the southern portion of Phelger Estate is available from Huddart Park.
Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) protects open space on the Peninsula and in the South Bay for the benefit of all. Since its founding in 1977, POST has been responsible for saving more than 76,000 acres as permanently protected land in San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties.